Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I Prefer the Mountain of Muffins

When I saw this I just turned around and walked out of the room.  Dennis dumped out all of the toys.  Thankfully, William saw it as an opportunity to organize. :)  William, Alex, and Dennis played all afternoon going through the toys.
Julia made her famous Banana Muffins the other day for snack.   They are sooooo good!
Anastasia is so awesome with Dolly and Misty.  She is an animal lover through and through.  Just today when we were sitting in the dentist office and I was looking through a magazine and she was leaning on my shoulder, she pointed to all the dogs in the pictures.  I saw a famous actress, too much make-up, an ad for dresses as I looked through the magazine.  Anastasia saw all the animals and pointed them out to me. 
Dolly and Misty love her very much.
Grandma and Grandpa are here visiting.
Paul is very excited to learn how to knit.  Grandma is an excellent teacher.
While I was cooking dinner, Paul was watching me.  "I love your face," he told me.  He caught me off guard with the comment so I repeated what I thought I heard him say.  Yup, he said he loves my face. :)  Sweet.

Speaking of saying things, Dennis also said something very sweet to me.  As I was putting him down for his nap he asked me if he could be homeschooled.  In the sweetest voice he asked me,"Will you please teach me?"  I feel bad that the answer is no for now.  Teaching kindergarten is very challenging I have quickly come to realize, and honestly I don't think I would do a very good job.  For anyone who can teach someone to read--- wow-- you have a special gift-- something I don't have.   But I won't rule it out completely-- who knows what the Lord has planned between growing my ability to teach and growing Dennis' ability to read!


  1. Hi Christine!

    I taught my boys to read with the book "How To Teach Child to Read in 100 Days". It worked and was very easy.

    I hope it is something that might encourage you.


  2. Christine!!! You have it in you! And it just isn't that hard! :)
    That is WHY we began to homeschool. The School could not teach our son's to read.
    We used the "Handbook for Reading" and within 3 months they were reading.
    Email me if you want more info. :)

  3. I love your family!
    I too struggle with the early reading teaching and the getting through it factor. Thankfully my husband was willing to take that task on in the evenings! However, you may have a older child that aspires to being a teacher and teaching Dennis would be GREAT experiential learning. ;) You never know what God may have planned.

    OH! Congratulations on the two boys!!!! So excited for you.

  4. I was a high school math teacher (and I ran away from anything younger than Jr. High!!), and am working on teaching my third kid to read. It's hard, but so, so rewarding. It's incredible to be able to be patient, and not insist they read at 4 or 5. My oldest didn't read until she was 7, and now she is 4-5 grade levels ahead! You could do it, but you don't have to!

  5. I think boys are often interested in learning how to crochet and knit. My neighbor son Kamal was on cloud seven when I invited his sister and him as well to my place to learn how to cross stitch!

  6. :)) I love that picture of Dennis:)) He knows his own mind :))I like that he has his own opinion of being homeschooled. He seems a smart boy!

    Agi from Hungary

  7. We have four girls. The first three were easy to teach to read...the fourth has struggled for four years now. It is amazing how better I was at patience when I didn't need it with the first three!

  8. Oh my, Paul's comment just melted my heart! It has been so beautiful to watch he and Anastasia blossom in their family:-) When I taught one of my kids kindergarten, I used "Hooked on Phonics" and it worked and he is a great reader. Just an idea to maybe check out;-)

  9. I am sure you could. You have what I call "heart" for your kids and you will help them even the ones with learning disabilities... and the reward of watching them actually read is awesome.

  10. That was my biggest concern this year--teaching the kindergartners to read! But honestly it hasn't been too bad. It helps that I have bigger kids who can read and we have books everywhere in our house. It's seen as a big milestone when you can read around here. :) My bigger problem is one of my older kids who I think has some learning difficulties. I'm still not sure how best to teach her but we're taking it one day at a time.

  11. Hi Christine! Thanks so much for sharing my post about the Guardian Angel project on your FB. I'm excited to see that you're bringing your own "other angel" home soon!


  12. Hi!
    Re; Dennis and homeschooling. I always thought the same thing-that I just wasn't cut out for teaching reading! But this year, my son NEEDED ME. He needed ME to bridge him from kindergarten reading level (sept. 2011) to 2nd grade. WE DID IT! He started 2nd grade just after Holiday break this past January, and was where he needed to be in terms of reading! is a great place to start.

  13. George Eliot (wrote Silas Marner and Adam Bede) wrote “Life began with waking up and loving my mother's face.”

    So wonderful for Paul that he is already loving your face. I love to see how you bless each other!


    P.S. I second the 100 Easy Lessons book. I am working through it with my 4th (7 y/o and deaf). He has a love/hate relationship with the book, but he is learning (!). Since he hates all things quiet and anything resembling work, it has more to do with slowing down and working than the book. He does love the pictures:) It would be a great complement to what a child does at school. Lessons are short and an older sibling could do the lessons with the younger one.

  14. Just think of great great great Grandmothers...they didn't have "hooked on phonics" or all these books to "teach them to read" I home school my 6 yr old and 4 yr old and will my 17 month old..We don't really call ourselves in a particular grade...say K or 1st grade...we just work at where the kids are at. that may be K reading for daughter and k-1 with son. I never bought any books to teach them. We just read a ton and if they come across a word they don;t know then I tell them and they usually remember it for next time.

    I tried briefly to "do phonics lessons". They could care less and it didn't stick with my kids. My 4 yr old by just being around everyone basically taught herself to read.

    I love BOB books to start. We have 4 sets. The K, 1st grade..sight words...They have a sentence or two and have black and white stick figures. A splash of color here and there.

    If I can teach our now 6 yr ols son with SEVERE ADHD/ODD to read i am sure Dennis and you would do fine. I mean how can one teacher teach 30 kids to read? there is no way. My son was in K and never learned to read. i taught him in a few weeks...

    Good luck!

    You would love having him home with everyone else!

  15. Let me third 100 easy lessons! It wasn't always easy, nor was it always 100 lessons, as we would sometimes take a break and then repeat a lesson or two, but it works amazingly well! My 5 year old is now reading at around a forth grade level, she just finished a 25 chapter chapter book without pictures.

    I'll also second the bob books. Once she got far enough in 100 lessons, the bob books helped her build confidence and joy in reading.

  16. I had the same feelings with my youngest daughter. I got this AWESOME book called, Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons. It was a miracle book!!!! Give it a try :)

  17. How sweet of Paul! And that toy dumping... a frequent occurrence in our house! I take it as an opportunity to weed out toys to give away!

  18. Hi!Do not worry about teaching Dennis to read. My daughter who started college at 16 years old and is a junior chemistry major in college never learned how to read very well until she was 9 years old. I used educational reading material from Christian Light Education co. to teach my daughter also Christian LIght had assistants who offered much support .Christian Light also had a teaching reading course I took. I also used material from Mott publishing co. and the McGruffy readers were quite helpful.Maybe you may want to check in on how Dennis is doing in school maybe someone is making fun of him .Maybe that is why he asked you to teach himAt home he will be around people who love him. Good luck, Pat

  19. You are doing a great job with your homeschooling and I enjoy reading about the various things you all do together.

    My two sons are 6 years old (both from Russia and 6 weeks apart in age) and we officially started K last August, although I had already been teaching them phonics. We are using the Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading and we are almost finished with the book. It has been awesome for my two sons and they are both reading at a 4th grade level now. This book really gets great results. The author is the same as The Well Trained Mind.

  20. Would you mind posting the banana muffin recipe, please? I'm a huge muffin fan! :)

  21. If you want to try the reading thing, I highly recommend "How To Teach Child to Read in 100 Days", too. :) I'm using it with both my boys. Dante is too hyper to sit down and focus on the book, so what we do is write down the letters in the book on post-it notes and stick them around the room. I ask him to find "a" and he has to run to it. Then "m", etc. Dorian learns just fine sitting still but he doesn't think he can read. It's pretty funny when he tells everyone he can't read but then gets stuck on a video game and quietly reads the instructions to himself . . . without realizing that he's actually reading!

    Love that you have an organizer in the family, that's so helpful! And bakers galore. Can't wait til my guys can make supper.

  22. There is nothing quite like hearing your child read and knowing you taught him how. :)


I find your comments so inspiring! Thanks for visiting our family blog, and sharing your thoughts.